Retail

Amazon launching in South Africa next year

Amazon announced that it will launch Amazon.co.za in 2024, providing South African-based sellers the ability to reach customers nationwide.

Over the last year, there were numerous media reports that Amazon was set to launch marketplace and Amazon Prime services in South Africa.

Codenamed “Project Fela”, the project includes its own marketplace in the country and plans to launch its “Fulfilment by Amazon” service for third-party sellers.

However, the online retail giant played its cards close to its chest and did not comment on their plans – until now.

Robert Koen, general manager of the Sub-Saharan Africa region for Amazon, confirmed their plans in a press statement.

Koen said they look forward to launching Amazon.co.za, providing local sellers, brand owners, and entrepreneurs the opportunity to grow their businesses in South Africa.

Amazon offers a range of valuable tools, programs, and services to empower sellers and foster their business growth.

It includes free educational content to support sellers at every stage of their journey, including articles, videos, webinars and case studies.

The launch of Amazon.co.za in 2024 will provide independent sellers throughout the country an opportunity to rapidly launch, grow, and scale their businesses.

More than 60% of sales in Amazon’s stores are from independent sellers, most of which are small and medium-sized businesses.

Amazon will compete directly against large South African eCommerce players like Takealot, Makro, and Bash.

Takealot CEO Mamongae Mahlare said Amazon’s launch in South Africa shows the market is poised for growth.

“When you get a big player like that into the economy, it demonstrates the potential that sits within this market,” Mahlare said.

She added that it demonstrates that Takealot has built an investment case big enough for global companies like Amazon to take note.

Mahlare did not seem overly concerned about Amazon.com’s launch, saying their shareholder, Naspers, has invested in Takealot for the long term.

“They have a long-term view on the business and the size of the opportunity,” she said.

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